April 11th 2013, Seven New Poems and Seven Old Ones, Copyright Doug Stuber


The one who
exudes such
natural kindness
first introduces
her boyfriend, and then because

I sit alone, buys
chocolate-covered almonds at
us on Uchiro.
We met twice by luck

Inside a
Two week stretch.
She can’t help but help.
“You are lucky,” I say
to the man, also

skinny, who went for
the one who could never get
angry, laughs
genuinely and
has the fortitude

to allow
others to be themselves with
no demands,
expectations or
pushes to annoy.

I can’t be
sure of any of this, but
look at her:
the only trick would
be to stay as kind.


Your real tears first shocked
then attracted one
more feeling
creature. He’s complex,
you are not.

He’s old, you are not. But that
square walk. The one in
which you told
of visiting-for
all-hours “cousin” who was

the other woman
even if he was
Even if your heart
Was shredded.

You reached, exposed, but did not
dream. A realist,
all you asked
was that he come to
you. Geography, the test,

a small one,
the only one he had to
pass. He told
me you will press his
heart, pet his arm, take

care of him
when he gets old. He fears you
are trapped and
knows time is running
out. Are you still there?

GW, M.D.

Doctor, a blast form
the past, so concerned,
in touch with
all his patients’ needs. He found

love, he know so much
more than medicine. He, the
muse of the memoir
I don’t have the courage to
Write. You know,

the book whose truths would
be better written
as novel
or drama: a six hour play
resembling Sartre

or Wagner, full of self-hate,
huge errors
from my own hand. Yes,
those P.T./I.N.R. checks

also serve
to remind how short life is,
thus, equal
inspiration, a
touch above home life,

a full ledge to peer
back from. Not enough
practitioners spread
the love like you do.


You danced your way through
Bald Head with
No Boundaries, either in
art or wild
personal life. You

kept it fun,
invited Dick to
retire in your
special village, put the
painting I got on every

catalogue cover
because you
knew how broken I was, and
observed the
tear widen at times.

Without friends
like you this light would
have faded by now,
maybe not extinguished, nor
distinguished, just turned off by

We blew the Sea Frolic down
the beach a
mile before it got
demolished so a

new owner
could build a mausoleum,
the kind you
live out life in. We
will never “retire.”


Luc, so Swiss in the
charming sense, obsessed
by orange
on blue and tangled

figures. Are
they dancing, mating,
running from
war, or an extension of
Matisse? You once sent your full

pile of art,
via catalogue,
so I could show your
stuff to the
curator of the

latest big
Biennale, but
Gwangju was
unable to grasp your smart
version of love as you’ve known

it. We try
and try to sneak a living
out of our
passion, but hearts get
broken in many

ways when laid
bare on the wall, exposed to
and nincompoops,, then
adored, brought to life.


Pamela started
it for all of us. If not
for you, where would we
be? What would we have

done with our art? How
much would we
have been able to
squeeze from brush
strokes, love hugs,

drab studio time
still wondering why?
But we didn’t have to dream
any more, the dream
had come true, the beach,

ever welcoming,
led offshore
to explore new lands,
by your friends

to partake
of their culture, influenced
in ways we
didn’t expect. Flow
now Pam, keep the dance

alive, be
proud to have given so much
to all us
souls tethered by art
to your better world.


Acquainted by
marriage, friends via
art, always on the
move, but at wildly
different levels.

Your theory works: only show
in world capitals,
only teach
at the top
schools, only draw or

paint what is
in your heart, only
live a pristine life,
even if, at age
eleven your job

is to crawl under cars to
check for bombs as the
son of an
diplomat. I want

to find the
pottery you made back in
days, or talk to Glass
again to gain a

new angle
on an admirable life.
install, web, draw, sculpt,
drift diary, drift.


Old Ones:


Eagle Pond Farm

October in New Hampshire means colored leaves for kicking.

Donald kicks a few heading into town for cheese.

He notices that the antique dealer, once again, announced

The coming of winter by changing his sign.  It now reads:

“Driveways Plowed, Reasonable Rates.”  The type of

De-evolution Donald appreciates.

Standard time ensures contrast, as autumn’s last bonfire

Sends a leaf-shaped spark into the air.

A simple way of life is free to walk around without inspection:

So Donald does.  He checks out of Najur’s General Store

With Gouda and N.Y. Sharp Cheddar tucked away.

He climbs up the knoll then down the driveway to the farm.

He kicks a pinecone to the safety of the woods.

He exhales steam that quickly disappears.

He can almost see ice forming on the pond.




Haiti,” Don’t You Do What Your Big Sister Done!”*

Over here in stack D, just after being denied

Acceptance into the school-of-no-conscience, I can

Still look at studying females write unspoken

Oratories to the birds.  Here they are disheveled in

Auburn t-shirts, unwashed black jeans, loop earrings

Swinging out from pulled-up hair, studying, until an

Ominous frat-type saunters over, hunkers down

And starts a six minute courtship based on the

Single night he saw her prancing through a party

Overcrowded with beer-depressed gigglers who

Announce their new members in 1,000 dollar

Symbols emblazened on a quarter page worth

Of the Independent Florida Alligator.  Conspicuous

Adults who need something to talk about can

Secure a copy and put it in the scrap book so

Otis can remember the year his daughter did

All the tight-butted back packs that roam

SAE, thus becoming the most popular “little sister.”

* Note the OAS theme in the opening letters.  Get it?

Organization of American States, doing nothing to

restore Democracy in Haiti.  Haitians being “repatriated”

in order to get tortured.  Haiti becomes the little sister of

Cuba.  Thus, the title.  It’s a bit obscure, but, what can I say?



One more walk, rain, walk

But this time the sprinklers that

Never stop watering sidewalks

Stop.  Eight hundred fifty seven

Trips by these sprinklers, which

Water the sidewalks at a school

That, moneyless, blows $85 M

Per annum on Public Relations and

Administration, finally yields a view

Of recalcitrance:  black tubes

Back into the earth in the middle

Of a rain.  It doesn’t stop blonde

Hair from being tossed back, or

Bikes from hitting pedestrians, or

Green sports coats, yellow ties from

Entering business classes.  But the hope

That one day someone will shut

Off the lights at the pool glimmers

In the minds of the living.

Water II

No Bananafishing today J.D.

Just another scrap of laughter

In the middle of one hundred

Days-in-a-row of living death.

Almost no one is right anymore.

Money is the orgasm, orgasms

Are inhibited by AIDS, AIDS

Keeps the population down un-

Naturally, so why go to war?

War feeds the rich, the rich feed

Themselves.  Hockey players buy

Raytheon, Raytheon builds Patriots,

Patriots kill when ordered to

But feel bad when they realize

A hundred thousand “men-in-sheets”

Running away have been shot down.

Bush buries a dog that died

From drinking water that never

Became a priority on Capitol Hill.


Water III                                                                                                   

Blue is no longer good enough

To squelch the ugly feelings

That persist through fog’s insistance

In the pastoral green suburbs of

Alachua County Florida.  Services

To farmers will now be discontinued

As the city merges outward to

Expand its fading tax base.  The

Poor, if they are downtown, will

Not get better schooling because

The real problem, of course, is law

And order.  The recent (1990)

Attempts to form gestapos have

Only been denied by the narrowest

Of margins.  Barbara, your husband

Is a fascist.  So please don’t drink

The water, unless it’s jugged in

Plastic which keeps the Exxon

Floating down a waterway near you.


Water IV

Execution replaces caring in

Societies gone mad, where the

Idea of rehabilitation threatens to

Take away the jobs of racist police

Pretenders who offer few excuses

For their deeds, so often brutal.

But if L.A. and Mammy think the

Problem is lack of order, wait ’til

They find themselves without drinking

Water.  The business of water is

Clearly Canadian, a group that owns

The rights to sell, in moderation,

Water from the north.  For now its

Fancy Cola, but soon this rare

Commodity will falsify A. Smith.

Chicago will have it listed on the

B.O.E., and drinkers everywhere

Will be beholden, as farmers

Are today, to the trading pits.

Water V                                                                                                                    

The light gray elm remaining

Is dark, it rains today.

Smug tie-dyed pseudo-philosophers

Prance in the warmth of winter,

Believeing nature’s last gasp a fun

Time.  Explain why cars get less

Than 100 MPG.  Explain why trains

Have been usurped by trucks and

Japanese MPVs.  Listen to yourself

Justify the oil glut and go off

To die for someone else’s greed,

As the shinning path demolishes

One more village while quick

Decisions earn millions in less

Than pristine Salomon accounts.

How do you like the fact that

Everything’s a lie?  “The battle is not

Between Democracy and Communism,

But Democracy and Capitalism.”

Water VI

Here, at the school where once

Every six years the sprinklers go

Off, you can get suspended for

Practicing the right to free speech:

Expelled for persisting to do so.

The idea that a university would

Founder free-thinking is too much

Under the mercury umbrella of

Late-century conservatism.  If

Water makes it to 2050 then

Jump for joy and laugh at the

Whining contained herein.  But

Don’t expect all-correcting nature

To save it for you. The idea of

Bringing children into this is repulsive.

Save your relationships some other way!

When water prices fluctuate at the

Whim of investors, you’ll see how

Dear the price of living can get.


Fraternizing with the Enemy

Forty nine Krishnas flow by a bookstore and chant.

Now they make rhythms and jump up and down

With children on their shoulders.  They stop a

While then keep walking, in faded orange garb,

Down in front of a bus and deli-lunch shops.

One beer-drinking sophomore decides he’s going

To join them since the air is so refreshing here in

Cool November.  “Don’t you know they are the

Enemy, and lazy, and basically beggars.”  But this

One brave individual ignores his drinking buddies

And chants, unahsamed about what he knows not.

The incident serves to remind you that if you

Fraternize with the enemy, they no longer are

The enemy.  Sure, it’s hard to buck the system,

Even harder to ignore the warped vision of the

World as portrayed by the evening news.  Do you

Want to make good money, or fight for useless

Causes that don’t matter anyway?  When will

You take responsibility for your own life rather

Than fighting for everyone else’s life? Huh? Huh!


On Being Asked to Write a Republican Poem


Welcome to our wonderful campaign dinner

$1,000-a-plate to support this year’s sinner.

There is nothing we can do to get your job back,

But thanks for supporting our conservative track.

All liberals will be labeled and thrown in the can,

Don’t vote for Brown, he has the best plan!

Labor supports Harkin, so he’s out,

All for the red white and blue stand up and shout!

We have you here to celebrate in style

While unemployed workers stand in line to file.

They file for relief while we go to war,

War creates jobs, that’s what it’s for.

Don’t let these remarks effect your appetite,

We’ve kept the Haitians well out of sight.

So here’s to good times, warm women, cold beer,

And a Dow Jones Industrials without any fear.

And golf games in the midst of Jap-bashing

And philandering Democrats who deserve a good lashing.

Let’s not forget de Furher George Bush

Zeig Heil!  (Our commander has a backbone of mush.)

I’m begining to hear a few grumbling sounds

I’m sorry, once again I’ve gone out of bounds.

But your generation has just got to know

That you’ve left your children with no place to go.

Which town will become the next disaster?

Strip mines, clear cuts or nuclear reactor?

With the fall of the commies and Saddam being meek,

Who will be our next enemy of the week?

Ah, but I’ve strayed from my original job:

To write a poem in favor of your type of mob.

I’m sorry I couldn’t, your greed makes me mad

To think of all the luxuries you’ve had

While most people struggle for food on their plate

You sit here and toast their miserable fate.

By now you’re thinking “this guys quite an ass”

“86” the buffoon, give him the gas.

But if one single line that I’ve written tonight

Makes you sad for the poor, then I’m right.

The next war will be in Korea or Cuba,

Or Zaire, or Egypt, or Haiti or Aruba.

There’s no need to fear, our forces will win,

You can keep right on drinking your tonic and gin.

Just keep on smiling, in this delight:

Oppressing the downtrodden is our national right.


      Tragedy at Woodside

The Millhopper puffs

An ethereal mist into the night.

Insects forget the danger

And come on six point landings:

Secure at Dali Memorial.

Ants and uncles wait

Inside the terminal, protected

From the memory of fright.

Most are happy in art’s custody

But one takes off, quite unsatisfied.

Screams of horror beg

Her not to go, but youthful instincts

Coax her to greater heights.

She clears the creek heading over trees,

Landing lightly under Gala’s brush.


Pablo and Max

This is the story of Pablo and Max,
They left New York City to avoid income tax
And gather some primitive artifacts.

They left in the rain in spring ’52
And were seen in the fields with an African gnu
Admiring the shapes that came into view.

While Pablo was digging up red cube-like art,
Max drew some monsters on government charts.
(They looked like amoebas with elongated parts.)

The days were spent studying carvings of stone,
Or walking in jungles out on their own.
An artist knows how to survive alone.

Always popular with their new friends,
These two went about setting new trends.
They taught the natives how to pretend.

Unlike the scientists who went to steal,
The artists just borrowed that primitive feel.
A congenial arrangement, if not ideal.

Copyright, Doug Stuber

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